According to multiple studies, there is no association between breast enlargement surgery and breast cancer.
The following is an excerpt from a US breast implant manufacturers on the subject.
Reports in the medical literature indicate that patients with breast implants are not at a greater risk than those without breast implants for developing breast cancer. Some reports have suggested that breast implants may interfere with or delay breast cancer detection by mammography and/or biopsy; however, other reports in the published medical literature indicate that breast implants neither significantly delay breast cancer detection nor adversely affect cancer survival of women with breast implants.
One recent study has reported an increased incidence of brain cancer in women with breast implants as compared to the general population. The incidence of brain cancer, however, was not significantly increased in women with breast implants when compared to women who had other plastic surgeries. Another recently published review of four large studies in women with cosmetic implants concluded that the evidence does not support an association between brain cancer and breast implants.
One study has reported an increased incidence of respiratory/lung cancer in women with breast implants. Other studies of women in Sweden and Denmark have found that women who get breast implants are more likely to be current smokers than women who get breast reduction surgery or other types of cosmetic surgery. Cervical/vulvar cancer – One study has reported an increased incidence of cervical/vulvar cancer in women with breast implants. The cause of this increase is unknown.
One study has reported an increased incidence of stomach cancer and leukemia in women with breast implants compared to the general population. This increase was not significant when compared to women who had other types of plastic surgeries.
Neurological Disease, Signs, and Symptoms
Some women with breast implants have complained of neurological symptoms (such as difficulties with vision, sensation, muscle strength, walking, balance, thinking or remembering things) or diseases (such as multiple sclerosis), which they believe are
related to their implants. A scientific expert panel report found that the evidence for a neurological disease or syndrome caused by or associated with breast implants is insufficient or flawed.
In several studies, a higher incidence of suicide was observed in women with breast implants. The reason for the observed increase is unknown, but it was found that women with breast implants had higher rates of hospital admission due to psychiatric
causes prior to surgery, as compared with women who had breast reduction or in the general population of Danish women.
Effects on Children
At this time, it is not known if a small amount of silicone may pass through from the breast implant silicone shell into breast milk during breastfeeding. Although there are no current established methods for accurately detecting silicone levels in breast milk, a
study measuring silicon (one component in silicone) levels did not indicate higher levels in breast milk from women with silicone gelfilled implants when compared to women without implants. In addition, concerns have been raised regarding potential damaging effects on children born to mothers with implants. Two studies in humans have found that the risk of birth defects overall is not increased in children born after breast implant surgery. Although low birth weight was reported in a third study, other factors (for example, lower pre-pregnancy weight) may explain this finding. This author recommended further research on infant health.
Potential Health Consequences of Gel Bleed
Small quantities of low molecular weight (LMW) silicone compounds, as well as platinum (in zero oxidation state), have been found to diffuse (“bleed”) through an intact implant shell. The evidence is mixed as to whether there are any clinical consequences associated with gel bleed. For instance, studies on implants implanted for a long duration have suggested that such bleed may be a contributing factor in the development of capsular contracture and lymphadenopathy. However, evidence against gel bleed being a significant contributing factor to capsular contracture and other local complications, is provided by the fact that there are similar or lower complication rates for silicone gelfilled breast implants than for saline-filled breast implants. Saline filled breast implants do not contain silicone gel and, therefore, gel bleed is not an issue for those products. Furthermore, toxicology testing has indicated that the silicone material used in the Mentor implants does not cause toxic reactions when large amounts are administered to test animals. It also should be noted that studies reported in the literature have demonstrated that the low concentration of platinum contained in breast implants is in the zero oxidation (most biocompatible) state. In addition, two separate studies sponsored by Mentor have demonstrated that the low concentration of platinum contained in its breast implants is in the zero oxidation (most biocompatible) state. Mentor performed a laboratory test to analyze the silicones and platinum (used in the manufacturing process), which may bleed out of intact implants into the body. Over 99% of the LMW silicones and platinum stayed in the implant. The overall body of available evidence supports tat the extremely low level of gel bleed is of no clinical consequence.”